President Rodrigo Duterte once again read a list of government officials dismissed by the Ombudsman for corruption and other charges in his televised address on Wednesday night.
The list included Alejandro Rivera, regional vice president of the Quedan and Rural Credit Guarantee Corporation. Duterte said the nature of his case was conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, dishonesty, and grave misconduct.
“Lahat sila ito pare-pareho ‘yan, dismissed from service with accessory penalties of cancellation of eligibility, forfeiture of retirement benefits, and the perpetual disqualification for reemployment in the government service. Ibig sabihin he can no longer seek employment sa gobyerno,” the President said.
He also read a list of Armed Forces personnel discharged from service, led by Quartermaster 1st Class Petty Officer Elpidio Aromin of the Philippine Navy, dismissed for fraud against the government.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Jesus De Egurrola of the Philippine Navy was dismissed for the same reason, the President said. “Disbursing officer --- pera ‘yan (he handled money),” Duterte said.
Also listed was Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Lecyl Nambatac for embezzlement, misappropriation and misapplication of government funds and conduct prejudicial to good order and military discipline; Apprentice Seaman Ed Mark Saura, and Seaman Second Class Sunny Boy Beberino.
The list also included a municipal treasurer, barangay captains, secretaries, and treasurers, and administrative aides.
“Itong mga treasurer karamihan niyan barangay, municipal city, o kaya sa national, dito sa gobyerno ko mga involved sa pera ‘yan,” Duterte said.
Meanwhile, the Department of Justice-led Task Force Against Corruption will start investigating corruption in other government agencies, aside from anomalies at the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation.
Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Wednesday vowed to focus on other allegations of corruption in other government agencies.
“We’re now shifting our focus to other agencies where corruption is likewise prevalent,” Guevarra said, in a text message to reporters.
Guevarra stressed that the TFAC will be unrelenting in its investigation of graft and corruption in government.
“We want to convey the message to the people that the anti-corruption campaign of the government is a continuing effort. While our system of justice grinds rather slowly, we can assure that it works and that justice will eventually be served,” Guevarra stressed.
Last December, the DOJ’s TFAC had received close to 100 complaints of corruption and anomalies in government,
Aside from the DOJ, the TFAC is composed of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC), Office of the Special Assistant to the President (OSAP), National Prosecution Service (NPS), and the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC).
The task force also invited the COA, the Civil Service Commission (CSC), and the Office of the Ombudsman, but with due consideration of their independence as constitutional bodies.
The task force previously identified the government agencies it would prioritize in its corruption probe, namely the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the Bureau of Customs (BOC), the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Bureau of Immigration (BI) and the Land Registration Authority (LRA).
The BI and LRA are agencies under the DOJ.
As for its efforts to rid PhilHealth of corruption, the task force continues to file complaints before the Office of the Ombudsman against those who allegedly committed graft and corruption.
Among those who were filed with cases before the Office of the Ombudsman was former PhilHealth president and chief executive officer (PCEO) Ricardo Morales.